Matlouh - Moroccan Flatbread
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons instant yeast
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup warm (not hot) water
- 1 tablespoon or more any herb you like (or other stuff like chopped olive, caramelized onions....) This is optional, you can make the bread plain.
Combine all the dry ingredients in the food processor by giving them a whirl of the blades.
Stop the machine and add the water all at once. Close the machine and mix until the dough forms a ball of slightly sticky dough. Add more water by the tablespoon if you find your ball of dough is a bit tough. You want a very supple, softish dough.
Divide the dough in 4 balls. Oil them well with good quality, fruity olive oil and let rise in a warm place for 30 minutes.
Flatten a ball of dough in a 1/4 inch (slightly more thick actually) thickness round using plenty of oil on your working surface and your hands. Fold the flattened dough in 3rd (business-letter-like) as shown below. Put aside the long rectangle and proceed to flatten and fold the 3 other dough-balls.
Take the first long rectangle you formed, stretch it a bit first, then widen it width-wise being careful not to tear it. Roll all the "business-letter-style" folded doughs on themselves. When you arrive at the end of the rolling, take each side of the remaining dough and strech it a bit. Tuck well both ends of the stretched dough in each side of the rolls. Don't hesitate to tuck them in well, making fingers of each hand meet in the middle of the roll inside.
Oil each of your dough rolls and set aside all your rolls of dough for 30 minutes. Avoid drafts, the place should be warm. On the following pic, the dough have rested its 30 minutes and has leavened.
Heat your CAST IRON PAN (it's the best pan to use for this bread, anything else will produce a way less good bread) on your stove under medium-low heat. Let heat on that setting for at lest 15 minutes.
After your pan heated for 15 minutes, take a roll of dough and flatten it in a bit more than 1/4 inch thickness (less than 1/2 an inch though), using plenty of olive oil as you go.
Put on the pan and let cook on the first side until all the bread is translucent.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Take a peek while the first side cooks, lifting one side of the bread with a flat spatula.
- If your bread burns underneath while it's still very opaque on top, this means your heat is too high, lower it a notch.
- If you bread is still white (not browning) underneath and all the surface became translucent, this means your heat is too low, bring it up a notch.
Before flipping your bread to cook on the other side, drizzle yet again some olive oil on its surface. Cook on the other side. You may notice your bread is golden brown in the middle and not so brown on the sides. Not a problem, when both sides are cooked, just tilt the bread in the pan in such a manner that you brown the still white spots.
Images can be seen here http://zoukitchenculture.blogspot.com/2005/11/matlouh-moroccan-flat-bread.html which is where I got my recipe.